Tag Archives: gigantic

On The Rail: Gigantic Brewing

I arrive with a friend in tow, who has been kind enough to pick me up after I dropped my vehicle off to get repairs. Beaverton is a long, long way to drive and I’m very thankful to have people in my life who are willing to help me out. We sit and have beers, me with the Catch 23 Experimental Hop pale ale and her with the Pipewrench IPA that’s been aged in gin barrels. Both beers are deemed to be worthy. My Catch 23 is very drinkable, the hop presence mild but enough to offset the malts. It’s a pale, if by margin.

As the evening goes on and the beer warms up, though, I begin to weary of the Catch 23. If I’d gotten a 16oz ale instead of a 20oz one, I think my feelings would be much more positive. Portions matter, as strange as it seems and the Catch 23 wears out its welcome a little faster than I would’ve expected. Especially since my initial response to the beer was very, very positive. The first few sips are incredibly drinkable and got me to look forward to having the rest.

But the Catch 23 doesn’t stick the landing. Partially because it’s just a little thin; there isn’t much to taste as the beer gets finished. That’s OK, because this is an experiment and so I expect Gigantic to refine this beer and come back with something even better. I knew what I was getting into so I’m not going to complain that it’s a work in progress. On the other hand, my compatriot is enjoying the Pipewrench and it seems to be improving as she drinks it. Sometimes, it just works out like that.

The woman next to us is reading a book; I keep glancing over to try and see what it is she’s reading. I like to read and as someone who often writes in a bar, I feel an affinity for people who read in one.

Finally, I just ask and as it turns out, she hates what she’s reading. It’s not enjoyable for her at all. I tell her: “Reading shouldn’t make you suffer. If you hate it, quit. I’ve tried to ready Ulysses twice and both times I hated myself. Fuck that. I acknowledge that Joyce is an important author but I don’t have to read that bullshit. I can be happy instead and read something else.”

She says, “Great. Do you want my book?”

Which is how I ended up with this:

7pm The Day Off

I was fortunate enough to spend my day in maximum lounge mode and I have to admit, that’s pretty swell. Sure, I mopped the kitchen (and am I sexy now, ladies?) but the actual workload was somewhere between infant and preschool. It’s good to have those days when you can.

Oakshire/Gigantic Red Collaboration

I’m finishing up with an Oakshire/Gigantic collaboration, the Collabo Wabo. (Sounds like someone listened to a little Van Hagar in the day.) It’s a red ale made with agave and truthfully, I’m not sure what makes that special. It tastes a little fruitier than your average red and there’s no hop finish at all; touch chocolate there, otherwise clean. A little hop in the nose and I’m not sure what’s there: raisin, maybe? Faint fruit but nothing overwhelming. This is a red, after all; though a little hazy, hops, yeast, these things a jedi does not crave. It’s malty and easy to drink, almost a grownup version of chocolate-cherry infused 7up.

Or maybe I’m just crazy. As with all things, I do not suggest you take my word for it but instead try it for yourself.

There’s a red headed woman here that I could swear I’ve met before. I cannot recall where I met her though and as a result, that kind of uncanny familiarity feels weird. I have the awkward desire to stare at someone I have no business staring at, merely to satisfy a curiosity. Let us agree that there are proper methods to investigate curiosity and inappropriate ones and staring falls into the latter.

Maybe this is just what happens when you go to one place long enough: the people become familiar, regardless of whether or not you have met them. This is why we have archetypes, after all. I think that’s a good thing, because what it implies is that it doesn’t matter how different you may seem from someone, there is some common ground to be had, points in your life where you recognize them and they recognize you and there’s a chance to understand a person whom, under any other circumstances, you should never identify with as human or like you.

But the archetypes remain and they don’t care if you don’t recognize them. The monster, the thief, the trickster, the little red headed girl, the loyal dog, the old oracle or the wise drunk; we all gather under the tent. The only trick is to see the mask for the what it represents and then wait for the individual to come out, so you can accept the new thing.

Ah, it’s all just a wild hope that maybe we can do better, as people, you know? “Everybody can change!” It all sounds like bullshit. In part because change is scary and hard to deal with sometimes, because nobody wants to be left behind but change can do that and we all know it. That’s frightening.

Still, if we can all sit down and have a beer and chat, maybe there’s a chance for things to be more awesome, instead of less. Just sayin’.

Oooch. What if the red headed woman hates me? Maybe I ought to hunker down, sip my beer and write instead of hope for a better tomorrow. At the end of the day, I still have to do the work and that is more relevant than the smudge of a dream.